Since many other species of insects become dormant during the winter, it can be easy for homeowners to assume the same is true for termites. Unfortunately, these common pests will happily continue their destructive ways, even when outdoor temperatures fall. If you are a homeowner, learning more about termites and their habits can help you recognize an existing infestation more easily.
Common throughout the United States
Like humans, termites also need to stay warm, fed, and hydrated during harsh winter weather, and an occupied residential home meets these needs. Although there are more than 2,500 actual termite species known to exist worldwide, only about 45 of those are found in the United States. Those are then further divided into two main categories, those that live in dry or damp wood and those that live in the soil near wood.
Dry and damp wood termites
All termites consume wood and other types of cellulose materials as a food source. Termites known as dry or damp wood termites also make their home in the wood. Because of this, these termite types are most active in areas where weather conditions are warmer, such as the coastal or southern regions of the nation.
Colder regions, such as the Midwest and North are home to subterranean termites that live in soil that adjoins the wood they use for nourishment. It is important to note, however, that subterranean termites can and do exist in warmer regions, along with their dry or damp wood cousins.
Termites swarm to start new colonies
While most people have heard of termite swarms, many may mistakenly assume that swarming activities, also known as dispersal flights, involve the entire adult termite colony. Instead, swarming, which occurs most often on a warm spring day after a recent rain, occurs as part of their instinctual need to establish new territories.
When swarming termites reach a suitable area for colonization, they shed their wings and form reproductive pairs. A new colony begins by the mating pair's construction of a protective cell in an area of the soil where conditions are right and the wood they need for nourishment is readily available.
Homeowners who see swarming activity should know that the visible swarming insects are only a small portion of the actual population that exists in or near their home.
If you have noticed swarming activity or have any concerns that termites may be infesting your home, it is wise to have your home inspected by a termite pest control company, like EMCO Pest Control, immediately. Reputable pest control companies can look for sign of infestation, even in winter, and help you choose the right treatment option to keep your home free of these destructive pests.
Nothing is more frustrating than dealing with pests inside your house. In addition to giving you the creepy-crawlies, it might also make friends and family members think twice before they lounge on your sofa or stay the night. However, you don't have to let bugs ruin your lifestyle. By paying a professional who handles pest control, you can add an invisible barrier inside your home to ward off harmful insects. My blog discusses all different types of pest control methods, so that you understand the options you have available. After treating your home, you can sit back, relax, and enjoy a clean and relaxing space.